Saturday, February 6, 2016

A Really Fun Knit

Knitting is fun to me.  But sometimes, there is a project that just has an extra spark of joy.  The one  that makes you smile every time you pick it up to work on it.  The one you just can't put down.  Here's mine - Pepperberry Love by my LYS owner, Donna Higgins. 



I was gifted the pattern and a Fun Size Bundle of 100% cashmere by Pepperberry Knits (now Lux Adorna Knits) by a very generous non-knitting friend for Christmas.  The colorway is a custom colorway for In The Making.  This stuff is absolutely luscious  to knit with and I am loving it.  The only thing I can think of that would be better than knitting with it is wearing it.

This cowl is much longer than usual so as to use up every last bit of the yarn.  Once I got past the usual height of a cowl, I am happy to keep on knitting.  This is one of those fun, no rules knit.  Before I started, I laid out the yarn and planned it all out but I made some last minute changes along the way.

If you see me wearing this every day, you'll know why.  It's all that cashmere yumminess.

Happy Knitting!



Thursday, January 28, 2016

A Belated Happy New Year!


A very belated “Happy New Year” to you all.  New Year’s Eve and Day found me camped out on the sofa nursing a cold.  I had my sweet Lillie, a nice warm blanket, my knitting, and a book to keep company. 

On New Year’s Eve, I finished my Gifted Cowl, a free pattern from Churchmouse.  I finally blocked it last weekend and have yet to wear it.  It has a bit of “bling” to it and for those of you who know me, you know I don’t like a lot of bling but this I find to be a very subtle bling.  And I think it is something that I’d wear.  If I decide I don’t care for it after all, it’ll be gifted to a lover of bling.  The cowl is a very easy pattern and has instructions for all weights of yarn which makes it a fine pattern in my book. 

 

 
I finished my Itineris shawl last week.  I blocked it over the weekend and wore it to work yesterday.  I forgot to take pictures wearing it so here are the ones from the finished object official photo op.

 
Itineris was bought as a kit at Haus of Yarn on a trip to Nashville last summer.  The kit came with one skein of Malabrigo Sock Yarn in each color.  I ended up having to call my friend, Kelley, at Haus and ordering a second skein of the red and just barely broke the skein.  By the way, if you ever need to order from Haus, they ship lightening fast!

Happy Knitting!

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Postcard: Charleston, SC

The wedding was beautiful!  Charleston is a beautiful city - too much to see in a short time.  Already making plans on a return trip.




Photo Credit:  Sandy Parker

Photo Credit:  Sandy Parker

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Postcard: Augusta, GA

I can't believe I had no idea that Augusta was such a historic city.  In the hotel lobby, we found a brochure for the Woodrow Wilson boyhood home and since it was close by, we decided to visit.
 
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And the Augusta Canal was pretty interesting too.
 

 
 
Happy Knitting! 

 
 
 

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Sunday Dessert - Fried Apple Pies

My Grandmother and her sisters, Sevella, Flora, and Velma were famous 'round the parts for their fried apple pies.  If you were ever at Decoration or Homecoming at Graves Gap, then you probably had one.  That is, if you were smart enough to get it when you filled your lunch plate.  If you waited until you were ready for dessert, they were long gone.  They were always stacked on a plate or in a box and wrapped neatly in wax paper.  In the family, these things are of sainted memory.  And, I do mean sainted memory.  These pies not only bring tears to your eyes but are the standard to which every other fried pie is judged.

Many years ago, I had a lesson in making Fried Apple Pies from my Grandmother's sister, my Great Aunt Flora.  And for whatever reason, I haven't made 'em since.  After a cousin's death last month, I vowed to start making them.  Someone needs to keep the tradition alive.  Today was the day. 

Full disclosure:  I used canned biscuits.  I know, I know.  But my biscuit making abilities are lacking and besides, the day of my lesson with Aunt Flora, we used canned biscuits so I figured it was OK.  And I had to use packaged dried apples.  Back in the day, they would have dried apples from their apple trees.

Per the directions, I cooked the apples last night.  And today, I rolled the biscuits out, filled them with the filling, and fried them.  In lard.  In an iron skillet.  Just like my Grandmother did.  Oh, and I figured out really quick that the heat needs to be turned really low.

They looked right.  They were the right size.  I think they might need a bit more filling.  My Dad and I both agreed that the taste was close.  Very close.  And I'm good with that.



After they cooled, I wrapped them up in waxed paper just like my Grandmother and Great Aunts used to do.  I need more practice with that too. 

I think I'll try again next weekend and see if I can get any closer to the right taste.  If you've ever been one of the happy family members who've eaten these pies, leave a comment with your thoughts. I'd love to hear them.  And let me know if you'd like to volunteer as a taste tester. 

Here's the recipe.  It was given to me by my Great Aunt Flora Graves Pettit.

Filling:
6 ounces dried apples
1 1/4 cups water
1 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon butter

Combine all ingredients and cook down.  Chill overnight.

Pastry:
Make biscuit dough as you normally would.  Chill overnight.

Pies:
1.  Roll out biscuit dough and cut into biscuits. 
2.  Heat oil (lard is the secret ingredient).
3.  Roll each biscuit out into a circle about the size of a saucer.  Keep only a few ingredients out at a time.  Keep remaining biscuits in the refrigerator.
4.  Place 1-2 tablespoons of apples on the dough and spread.  Fold pastry in half and using a fork dipped in flour, crimp around the edges.
5.  Fry pie until done on one side and then carefully turn and fry on the other side until done.
6.  Bake leftover biscuits.

I think that a pie and a cup of coffee will be supper tonight. 

Happy Knitting (and baking)!








Saturday, October 31, 2015

A Day of Reckoning

This has not been a pretty day at Graves Gap Knitting.  This morning, I decided to gather up all my WIPs (works in progress) that were scattered all along the house.  I much prefer to call them WIPs rather than UFOs (unfinished objects) because in my mind, I'm still working on them.  I know, I have a serious case of denial going on here.  Here's what they looked like piled up on the blocking bed:


In that mess of piled up yarny goodness are:
3 blankets
2 baby blankets (only one pictured, I couldn't find the second one.  Uh oh.)
1 dish cloth (really? An unfinished dish cloth?)
1 shawl that needs a decision - weave in the ends or ripping it out. 
5 shawls
1 cowl
1 pair of socks
1 pair of fingerless mitts
1 scarf
1 washcloth, which is my current take along/purse project

I decided that the shawl needing the decision should be ripped out.  It just does not spark joy.  At all.   And that cowl?  I realized as I was taking the photo why I wasn't far into it.  That dungy grey just doesn't suit me.   I took it off the needles and popped it into a ziplock bag and into the freezer.  Why in the freezer?  Kidsilk Haze yarn is like velcro and I forget all the whys about how putting it in the freezer for a couple of hours makes it easier to rip out but it does.   As for the scarf, every time I knit on it, I keep thinking how it should be a pair of socks instead.  It was ripped on the spot.

The square in progress for one of the blankets, dishcloth, two shawls, socks, and fingerless mitts all went back into my current WIP bag.  The washcloth went back into my purse.  One shawl went into the project queue basket.

Finally, I corralled the last shawl and the blankets into a bag to be worked on intermittently and moved to the current WIP bag, hopefully, in the next few months. 

I think this definitely looks better. 


I would really like to finish up the WIPs by the end of the year so I can start on working through my queue basket.  Hopefully, I can resist starting something new!

Happy Knitting!


Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Postcard: Hanceville, AL

I had a great time at the Mike Farris concert last night.  He and the Roseland Revue did a great show.  I wore my Meet Me at the Ryman for the occasion.


(photo credit: Sandy Parker)

(photo credit: Sandy Parker)
Happy Knitting!